Vapouround magazine Special Issue 01 - Page 16

NEWS Vaping in ALASKA One thing that is sure to annoy vapers is just lumping them in with smokers and treating them exactly the same. Another thing which annoys vapers is penalising them for doing something which is arguably far less harmful to health than smoking traditional cigarettes. At the time of writing there is much anger and controversy in Alaska over the way vapers are being treated. For example there is a move by Alaska Governor Bill Walker which would see the imposition of a 100% wholesale tax on all vapor products as part of proposed new budget proposals. Such a massive tax hike would double the cost of all vaping devices, components, and e-liquids in the State of Alaska. While it is clear that the governor may need to find new sources of tax revenue, members of the vaping community are saying that this measure is unfair and unjustified. Members of the vaping community in Alaska are being asked to demonstrate 14 VAPOUROUND MAGAZINE USA their opposition to the proposed tax hike contacting local politicians to make their views known. Vaping advocacy group CASAA - The Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives Association - is encouraging its members and the wider vaping “This tax would double the cost of all devices, components, and e-liquids in the State of Alaska.” community to oppose the move. It said: “Alaska Governor Bill Walker’s budget proposal w ould destroy the vapor industry in Alaska by imposing an enormous 100% wholesale tax on all vapor products. “This tax would double the cost of all devices, components, and e-liquids in the State of Alaska. Gov. Walker’s budget would also increase the tax on smoke-free tobacco products like snus from 75% to 100% of wholesale. “It is vital that Alaska vapers take action NOW to oppose these bills.” It went on: “CASAA has been told that a significant number of Alaskan legislators believe that the vapor market has been taken over by “Big Tobacco.” They believe that this tax will have little impact on the diversity of products available to Alaska consumers. “A strong and respectful showing by common, everyday vapers in opposition to this tax could go a long way to educating them about the impact this tax would have on Alaskan consumers and small businesses.”